LAHORE: Awami Mazahmat—an alliance of leftist parties, trade and workers’ unions protested against austerity, inflation, privatization and anti-people government policies in front of Lahore Press Club on Tuesday afternoon.
According to the protesters, the government has proved that it is loyal to the international monetary institutes—International Monetary Fund, World Bank etc instead of its people.
These institutes play an instrumental role to empower oppressive economic structures and facilitate global capitalists to extract material and human resources in the Global South.
According to the agreement between the IMF and the government on May 12, the IMF will give 6 billion USD loan to Pakistan in next three years and there will be inflation, unemployment, privatiSation of the government and national assets, the imposition of taxes consequently. This will also result in a reduction in the education and health sectors, elimination of subsidies and 750 billion rupees tax imposition.
We demand that the government should immediately reject the IMF proposal, increase minimum wage at-least 30,000 rupees, cancel the plan of the privatisation of government health and educational institutes, revoke the privatisation of the public institutes happened in past and give them to the democratic control of the workers, the work hours should be reduced so that more people could be employed instead of downsizing, the education and health budget should be increased by imposing wealth tax on capitalists, landlords, feudal and multinational companies, all direct taxes including GST should be removed, the agriculture sector should be subsidised, all energy production companies should be in public control, instead of spending money on war and weapons the money should be spent on peace and harmony in the region and the state violence against the people should be eliminated.